Rob Garver

Rob Garver is a freelance journalist living in Springfield, Va., and is currently studying at Georgetown Public Policy Institute.

Recent Articles

Frist Plays It Cool

If it's true, as F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote, that the test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function, the Christian right assembled a veritable brain trust on the altar of a Kentucky “megachurch” last night. In the Family Research Council's much-anticipated “Justice Sunday” event, which was simulcast to evangelical and conservative churches around the country, a parade of evangelical preachers and activists stood before a crowd of 2,000 to alternately blast the federal judiciary for being too independent of Congress and to complain that Senate Democrats are “destroying” the independence of the judiciary. They promised that they were not questioning the religious beliefs of those who disagree with them -- then introduced speakers who openly cast doubt on the faith of specific Democratic lawmakers. And perhaps most absurdly -- with satellites beaming their images across the country,...

Justice Sunday

The fight over the Senate confirmation of President George W. Bush's most conservative judicial nominees is about to take an ugly turn, as the administration's supporters in the religious right prepare an organized campaign to accuse Democrats of being biased against Christians. For several years now, in the right's rhetoric against Democrats who have threatened to filibuster judicial nominees, there has been an undercurrent that hinted at an anti-Christian bias. But at a conference on the judiciary last week, sponsored by the Judeo-Christian Council for Constitutional Restoration (JCCCR), the movement began to take a more menacing form. In a speech laced with claims that the federal courts, and the Supreme Court in particular, have “systematically attacked Christianity,” Family Research Council president Tony Perkins announced the launch of a new campaign by the right to turn the confirmation battle into a religious war against the “anti-Christian left.” Perkins's organization will...

The Celibate Life

My parents go to a moderate-sized Catholic Church in New Jersey. Not long ago, some parishioners noticed that the pastor, who had come to the church several years before, seemed tired. In a conversation, he admitted that he had not had a vacation of any significant length for more than a decade. Like many priests in this country, the man had been spreading himself thin for years. As the sole priest in a parish of more than 2,000 families, his administrative and pastoral duties combined to create an extremely heavy workload. The death of Pope John Paul II over the weekend comes at a time when the Catholic population of the United States is continuing to grow, and the number of priests in the country is continuing to decline. According to data compiled by Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, the Catholic population of the United States has grown by about 41 percent over the past 40 years, to approximately 64.3 million. Over that same period, the total...

The Celibate Life

My parents go to a moderate-sized Catholic Church in New Jersey. Not long ago, some parishioners noticed that the pastor, who had come to the church several years before, seemed tired. In a conversation, he admitted that he had not had a vacation of any significant length for more than a decade. Like many priests in this country, the man had been spreading himself thin for years. As the sole priest in a parish of more than 2,000 families, his administrative and pastoral duties combined to create an extremely heavy workload. The death of Pope John Paul II over the weekend comes at a time when the Catholic population of the United States is continuing to grow, and the number of priests in the country is continuing to decline. According to data compiled by Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, the Catholic population of the United States has grown by about 41 percent over the past 40 years, to approximately 64.3 million. Over that same period, the total...

Raising Kaine

Meet Tim Kaine. His views on abortion are roughly in line with those of George W. Bush. He thinks John Kerry spent too much time on the campaign trail talking about windsurfing and not enough time talking about God. And the Democratic National Committee (DNC) is spending an unprecedented $5 million to help him get elected governor of Virginia. Kaine is expected to face conservative state Attorney General Jerry Kilgore in November in a race that officially got under way this week with the Republican challenger's announcement of his candidacy. As one of only two gubernatorial races being held this year (New Jersey is the other), Virginia's contest will be vivisected by political consultants of both parties anxious to see if there is anything capable of shifting religious voters away from the Republican Party. Is the devoutly Catholic Kaine, the former mayor of Richmond and the state's current lieutenant governor, a template for Democratic candidates to come? If he can keep the governor'...

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